Financing Our Foodshed
June 2019
Ever since we first launched a Slow Money initiative in the Charlottesville/ Richmond region in May 2018, we sensed the need extended far beyond that. So we established a long-range goal to expand statewide and this past month we took a huge step in that direction. We are now active in the Tidewater region thanks to a very generous grant from the John & Harriet Malbon Family Fund, through the Hampton Roads Community Foundation .

There is so much energy in the local foodshed in Tidewater - as there is all over the state - and we look forward to working with farmers and food entrepreneurs there, as well as those of course working in our Virginia seafood industry!

Back in Central Virginia, we made our sixth 0% SOIL loan to River Oak Farm in Nelson County. As summer heats up we are all reminded how important it is to stay cool. Well, this loan to River Oak is all about that very topic. You can read more about the farm and the loan below.

With this loan to River Oak we have now made a total $45,000 in 0% loans to sustainable farms in our local foodshed. Please help us keep the momentum going, no matter where you live in the state, and become a Nurture Capitalist.
Support the Slow Money SOIL Fund!

By participating in this fund you are “investing” by way of a charitable contribution. The contribution goes into our SOIL fund, and Slow Money Virginia takes care of the rest by making 0% loans to farmers who are in need of capital and are dedicated to using resilient, eco-friendly practices that produce healthy, nutritious food for our local communities. 

While charitable contributions may not traditionally be considered “investments” per se, we’re confident your contribution to our SOIL fund will produce valuable returns in the form of healthier soil and nutritious food for our communities in Virginia. PLUS, as a revolving loan fund your contribution will continue to give for years on-end as loans are repaid back into the fund.

This is a grassroots effort! We hope as many people as possible will support our mission. Any size charitable contribution you can make to our SOIL revolving loan fund goes a long way toward helping us help the local foodshed with its financial needs.
River Oak Farm

River Oak Farm is a diversified livestock farm located in Nelson County, with the Blue Ridge Mountains serving as a beautiful backdrop. The farm was started in 2014 and is run by husband-and-wife team Adam Aucoin and Cassy Kelly. They raise pastured chicken and turkey, grass-fed beef and forest-fed heritage breed pork. Poultry is their specialty and the foundation of their business. With 45 acres under management, they use intensive, rotational grazing methods on their herds and flocks to maximize soil health and to provide the animals with fresh forage daily. All poultry is processed on the farm and that’s where the need for a Slow Money 0% loan comes in. The farm has been lacking adequate freezer space to store chickens after they are processed. The loan will go towards outfitting an 8x20 walk-in freezer/refrigeration combo box for outdoor use, which will greatly improve efficiency on the farm and allow them a better opportunity to boost production and sales. You can find River Oak products at the Nelson County Farmer’s Market and their chicken is available at JM Stock in Charlottesville , among several other stores and restaurants. As always, we'll keep you posted on the farm's progress on our  website , Facebook page , and Instagram account .
Adam Aucoin and Cassy Kelly with their daughter Annabelle at River Oak Farm
Nurture Capital At Work

It's so rewarding to see progress and improvements on farms as a result of SOIL Loans. This month Little Hat Creek Farm installed the commercial dough sheeter which is used in their on-farm bakery to roll pieces of dough to a desired thickness. This will help them greatly improve efficiency in their bakery and hopefully boost production, which means more yummy croissants for everyone at the farmers market!

Along the way we've been keeping you up-to-date as well on Vanguard Ranch's construction of an aviary for their new squab business. This month they moved their White Utility King pigeons into their new home. Farmer Renard Turner and his wife Chinette are so excited about this new chapter on their farm... and so are we!
Slow Money in the News
We are always grateful when the local media takes interest in our organization. In the past few weeks our Slow Money efforts in Virginia have been spotlighted twice in very fine fashion. There was a feature article in C-Ville Weekly's C-Biz Magazine . And WPVC radio's Rick Moore hosted a Slow Money group on his show "Sunday Morning Wake-Up Call." The show included Slow Money Virginia co-founder Michael Reilly and two of our recent SOIL loan recipients: Renard Turner from Vanguard Ranch and Mark Jones from Sharondale Farm. You can listen to a recording here.
Always Accepting Farmer Loan Applications!
The mission of Slow Money Central Virginia is to support the financial needs of farmers and food entrepreneurs in our region. Our inaugural program called SOIL (Slow Opportunities for Investing Locally) is a 0% revolving loan program. We accept applications on a rolling basis. We can’t stress enough that no request is too small, as we want to be a friendly source of capital to help farm businesses grow in a way that’s best for them.

Sign Up for Peer-to-Peer Opportunities
In the past several months we have presented a few opportunities for peer-to-peer loans in the local foodshed. We use this strategy for those loan requests that are too large for our current SOIL fund reserves, or for requests from off-farm food businesses. Due to the growing number of these opportunities we are seeing, and expect to see in the future, we are trying to better systematize our approach. If you are interested in being contacted about peer-to-peer lending opportunities as they arise, please fill out the Lender Information Form on our website so we can curate the opportunities according to your interest.

Other Events & Opportunities
Resilient Virginia Conference at UVA
July 18-19, 2019
Darden School of Business
"Connecting Rural and Urban Communities for a Resilient Future" is the topic of this two-day conference put on by the nonprofit Resilient Virginia . Slow Money Virginia co-founder Michael Reilly will lead a panel on day one called the "Economics of Rural Vitality."



Save The Dates:

It's never too early to plan and you don't want to miss these two great annual conferences: